Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands! –JC
The very next sentence that Luke records in the Bible is, “And with those words He breathed His last.” (Would you pause for a few seconds and quietly thank Jesus for what He suffered through so that we, His followers, would be forgiven and free?)
Jesus’ last words on the cross were a Tweet of Trust. Of Letting go. Of ultimate submission. He could have controlled. But He chose to trust His Father in Heaven with the control.
The way Jesus “behaved” on the cross must have made quite an impression on the Roman Guards. Luke records that one of the guards said something right after Jesus breathed His last. Its recorded in Luke 23:47, “When the Roman Officer overseeing the execution saw what had happened, he worshiped God and said, “Surely this man was innocent.”
Can you imagine the burden and sorrow this Roman Officer carried home with him? I imagine it haunted him the rest of his life. I wonder if this Roman Officer was aware of what happened 3 days and 3 nights later. If he did know that Jesus rose from the dead, was it good news for him, or did it only make him feel worse about how he had to oversee and approve of in the killing of Jesus?
I hope to meet this Roman officer someday. It says that he worshiped God, so I am hoping he became a true follower of Jesus after Jesus rose from the dead. I’d like to ask this Roman officer some questions about that horrible day at the cross. I’d love to hear his full version of the story.
So Jesus says…”Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands.”
The human side of Jesus at the tweeting of this sentence must have been a bit nervous. Of course Jesus knew He was going to raise from the dead in 3 days and 3 nights. I still think the human side of Jesus had to of struggled in this final moment. He spent 33 years walking the land, encountering people and representing the Father in Heaven perfectly. We know that the Father never let Jesus down…but the “what-ifs” might have tempted Jesus to have bouts of nervousness while hanging on the cross. I wonder if those 33 years flew by or if it was one long day after another. He sure was mistreated a lot. But I also believe that Jesus laughed a lot. I mean…most of His time was spent with 12 other guys. You know how guys are when they camp together, walk together, spend a lot of time with each other. The fun side of Jesus had to of played some pranks on the guys. When a group of guys get together, somebody is trying to scare someone, sooner or later. Have you ever wondered if Jesus’ miracle of walking on water wasn’t to top a previous attempt by one of the Apostles’ at one of their “Gotcha!” moments? I don’t know. It sure seems like Christians have settled into believing that Jesus didn’t have any fun. We all know He faced many hardships and sorrows. The book of Isaiah says this in a couple prophecies about the Messiah. We know that Jesus faced unbelievable mistreatment at the hands of His own created people. But I still hold onto the hope that Jesus laughed…a lot. Surely, after Jesus caused the Blind man to see, while walking away from this miraculous moment and talking with the Apostles about it, surely Jesus said….”Hey guys…did you see the look on the faces of the religious leaders when I healed that blind man?” Or when He raised Lazarus from the dead. Lazarus had been dead for four days. Lazarus’ sister warned Jesus that it was too late and not to open the tomb for the smell would be unbearable. I wonder if Jesus, after raising Lazarus from the dead whispered in Martha’s ear, “I told you so,” and then laughed a laugh of love and joy…while giving her the perfect hug. Think about it…you have to be a pretty “fun guy,” to be accused by the religious leaders of being a “drunkard and a glutton.” We know Jesus wasn’t a sinner of any kind…but He must have had some fun to be blamed for being a drunk.
Well…as I wrap up this “Retweeting Jesus” series, I am wondering if you and I can trust like Jesus did. “Father…I ENTRUST my spirit into your hands.”
Its crazy what we ENTRUST in. How much trust do you put in that Red Light really causing everybody to stop and not go through the intersection? How much trust to do you place in that dotted line as you drive on that two lane highway? How much trust did I place in the parachute when I sky dived? How much trust do we place in the hands of pilots and airplanes as we fly through the air at 30,000 feet? How much trust do we place in the hands of construction workers and architects as we drive over their bridges, live under their beams? How much trust do we place in the hands of physicians as they “put us to sleep,” and then use a scalpel and cut us open and literally replace organs of our bodies? We really are a trusting people. It doesn’t seem like it, but if you really think about all that we trust…we are a trusting people.
But do we really “Entrust” God…enough to…
help a stranger?
let go of controlling your spouse?
commit to a church every weekend?
apologize for harm we caused?
not judge others?
resist temptation and peer pressure?
not manipulate the situation?
not abuse or manipulate our power of position?
not belittle others to boost our own self-esteem?
let go and let God?
On that cross…Jesus died and His Spirit left the earthly physical body it was borrowing and went into the control of God.
Its a safe and perfect place to land. You can be confident leaving your full trust In the hands of a loving God. He really is a God of love. If you don’t believe that right now, then I challenge you to read the other Tweets I have posted in this series. You can’t read them and walk away thinking God isn’t totally love!
If you are struggling letting go of anything in your life and you are trying to control whatever it is that you can’t let go of…is it working for you?
Its hard work to control.
It takes a lot of focus.
It will wear you out.
There is a lot of freedom that comes with being so fulfilled and whole in Jesus Christ that you don’t have to control anything.
That’s the good life. It fees you to serve, and give and love.
What are you controlling?
What would happen if you chose to let it go and trust God with the results?
Q: How do you do let “it” go and trust God with the results?
A: You put all your focus and energy in behaving like Jesus Christ and leave the results in the hands of God.
The early church was great at this. In Acts chapter 2 it says that the “Christians” gathered everyday and they DEVOTED themselves to the Apostles teaching, to fellowship, sharing in meals and to prayer.
Think about those “actions.” Can those actions be actions blamed for being CONTROLLING?
Have you ever heard anybody say, “You are so controlling…all you do is pray!”
Have you ever heard anybody say, “You are so controlling…please stop reading the Bible and learning!”
Have you ever heard anybody say, “You are so controlling…all you are is a good friend to others.”
Have you ever heard anybody say, “You are so controlling…please stop sharing your meals with others.”
Those statements are almost too ridiculous to type them out. Those are actions of trust and faithfulness and have nothing to do with control.
Are you thinking about what you might be controlling right now?
What if you asked somebody who really knows you well? Would they say you are trying to control something in your life?
Let’s keep going for clarity on this issue.
If you are just focused on getting a certain end result…then you are probably trying to control it.
If you are just focused on responsibility and doing what is right and focusing on holy behavior…then you are probably not being controlling.
Maybe a good way to look at it is through what we call, Cause and Effect.
You can’t control causes.
You can control effects.
What are some causes in your life that you simply serve? (trust)
What are some effects/outcomes that you are trying to force to happen? (control)
You are going to have to think on this one.
Here’s what I know for sure. You are made in the image of God and Jesus Christ.
Jesus ENTRUSTED everything into the hands of God the Father.
You are to be like Jesus because you were made in His image.
What must you let go of when it comes to the final results and just trust God by being faithful and let God take care of the results?
Can you and will you pray the following prayer right now and then back it up with action?
“Father in Heaven…I entrust everything in my life into your hands. Help me have the strength to behave like Jesus and leave my life results in your control. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.”
If you really want to get specific and let go of control.
Then ask a trusted person in your life to listen to you pray the above prayer out loud in front of them. And instead of praying using the word “everything,” replace the word everything with a specific thing you are controlling. Be specific…in the presence of a trusted witness.
Now that would take a lot of trust and would force you to let go of control. That is true accountability.
I know how good this would be for you and your whole life. It would be so good for you I would like to force you to do it.
But that would be controlling.
I want to ENTRUST!
How about you?